Community Edit: Creating the Mood Part II

We’re constantly amazed

(and inspired) by members of our community and their respective approaches to creativity. Over the years, our interviewees have introduced us to dynamic tools, resources, and innovative ways of thinking when it comes to building a business or refining one’s personal style – enter today’s story which further hones in on these themes. As a follow up to our 2015 edit, (where we asked a few of our interviewees to weigh in on this conversation and share whether or not visual aids play a role in their endeavors or processes), enjoy this updated edit which features more insights from newer members of our community who discuss what they’ve learned about their creative process so far. Read on for the full story and be sure to revisit our initial stories with each of these incredible women.

the style line lisa says gah

Lisa Williams, Founder of LISA SAYS GAH

“Mood boards set the tone for a collection or photo shoot. We typically organize by color as a starting point. We have physical mood boards in the office. It’s a quick reference point and keeps us inspiration through the season, or as we design into a new season. It keeps us consistent in vision as a team.”

Dechel Mckillian, Founder of GALERIE.LA

“I’m a completely visual person and mood boards play a key role for me at GALERIE.LA. My creative process is one of manifestation – bringing the inner out. I start every big creative project by sourcing images to help define what I want to create.
Then I put together a mood board to help me feel into the ideas and communicate aesthetic, color and form to the GALERIE.LA creative team. GALERIE.LA is opening our first IRL ethical concept shop this November at The ROW Downtown Los Angeles.
To develop our store concept, I immersed myself in interior design images, books, and magazines for a few weeks. I’m currently inspired by Japanese modern architecture and design. It’s easy to end up in a rabbit hole of beautiful contemporary homes that are ultra-modern, functional and integrate nature in unexpected ways.

I recommend using visual aids like Tumblr and Pinterest as a starting point to inspire creativity. As a Creative Director, a huge part of my role is to communicate visual ideas from everything including photoshoots to website design. In addition to online visual aids, I have folders on my computer filled with images from many creative projects. Chances are, an image that inspired me a few years ago is generally still relevant today and I can just go through my archives.”

aella the style line

Ariyana Hernandez, Marketing at AELLA

“Visuals are at the very center of my creative process. Emails, social media posts, live activations, and print collateral all rely heavily on visual imagery. So, I use mood boards and visual aids as a catalyst to my creativity, in this respect, and as a way to channel a specific feeling that I want my campaign to have. My work definitely has a added focus, aside from fashion considerations, since AELLA is a sustainably-driven company. So much of our brand story includes considerations on fabric, manufacturing, and production. This is definitely represented in our mood boards, and something I keep

So much of our brand story includes considerations on fabric, manufacturing, and production. This is definitely represented in our mood boards, and something I keep top of mind when developing campaigns.

For example, we’re working on a fabric focused campaign and recently completed a fabric photoshoot in which we paired natural elements with the fabrics their textures represent. We were inspired by food and makeup photography and used these visuals to tell the story of our fabrics – one of our main differentiators as a suitably focused brand.”

Lisa Salzer-Wiles, Founder of Lulu Frost 

“Mood boards keep the collection focused and creative. I love this time of year and it makes me think of the good old ’90s when I cut out pages in Elle and Vogue and collaged them into notebooks. Currently, I’m really into Christina Applegate in Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead.

As an aesthetic person, visual aids, in general, are crucial. I always have my Pantone reference chips, my Swarovski crystal board, and my colored pencils at hand. For me, I like to test my design ideas out in real life to see how they read and balance with one another. It’s all about the visual tools, baby!”

Olivia Wright, Founder of Rallier

“Mood boards ground us. Day-to-day, we are bombarded with so much imagery that pulls our attention in many different directions. Our mood boards provide an edited visual world that reminds us who we are (and who we aren’t). We’re consistently inspired by this notion of taking traditional patterns, shapes, and lines (gingham, pinstripes, etc.) and reinterpreting them through a feminine lens.

Visual aids build a foundational point of reference for who you are and what you’re creating. It’s quick and easy to add to your Pinterest boards but the act of printing and/or collecting a piece of inspiration and physically adding it to a mood board feels more intentional and, as a result, has more of an effect on our creative output. Our mood board is seasonless and serves as a consistent, yet evolving reminder of who we are.”

Olivia Assistant Designer + Developer at ADAY

“Mood boards are small but play a big part in the creative design process. We use mood boards to help us explain to ourselves and our team what our vision is for upcoming designs and capsules. It gives enticing visuals and ideas of what is to come and what we are hoping to portray to our customers. When we/you look for things that inspire we tend to see and look at colors and shapes and designs that appeal to a clean, sleek, versatile and seasonless aesthetic but also something that will reveal more than just a mere t-shirt per say.

We recommend using visual aids in any creative endeavor because photos and even using pieces of fabrics or trims give people a true feeling of what you’re explaining. If you explain what you envision in just words it doesn’t always come across the same to everyone else that it does to you alone.

We strive to stay creatively organized as well and continue to improve on this all the time because this can always be improved or expanded. We started implementing larger design meetings with our whole team at the very beginning of the design process to show our mood boards and visuals and explanations so everyone gets a chance to have a larger part or say in the future designs, not just one person or team. We also make sure to create mood-boards for every design and capsule, and then store them away to refer back to along with having many many Pinterest boards to keep us on our toes!”

Georgia Hobart, Founder of Hobes

“Moodboards and visuals of any kind for my business are not only useful but provide a base from which much of our work is produced. From product development through to marketing concepts, social media planning, and website development, we use visual aids in the planning of every touch point of the business. Inspiration in the form of imagery and material swatches assists with planning, development, and introduction of new styles and colors for our range.
the style line cinematique

We also use mood boards for all our communication channels. Working with a team based in different countries and focusing on different markets, visual aids are a very important internal communication tool for us also.”

Sarah Slutsky, Stylist

“Visual aids are everything! Pinterest is my lifeline.  I save fonts, interior design inspiration, logos, colors, generally, anything that I can think of that might give me an idea later.  It helps me stay organized, it’s a great tool.  That said, the most important visual aid in my life is getting out there and actually seeing things.
It’s easy to forget to prioritize time for going to the museum, seeing movies, and trying new restaurants when working hard. Without these experiences, creativity and imagination are severely limited. Our own eyes, ears, taste buds are the best aids we have!”